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East Ham man who battered traffic warden was ex-Guantanamo Bay detainee

PUBLISHED: 16:30 17 December 2011

A one-armed former Guantanamo Bay detainee chased and attacked a traffic warden he thought was spying on him, a court heard.

Tarek Dergoul was in a bicycle shop on Chalk Farm Road, Camden, when he spotted uniformed warden John Onywera issuing a ticket.

He thought the warden was snooping on him when he took the pictures of his illegally parked car.

Dergoul, 33, admitted to Highbury Corner Magistrates that he had attacked Mr Onywera, but he denied hiting the civil enforcement officer in the face and kicking him on the ground during the incident on August 6.

But the court saw CCTV footage of Dergoul confronting Mr Onywera before charging at him in the middle of the road, grabbing him and trying a judo-style trip.

Helped by an unidentified accomplice, Dergoul pursued the warden across the road while kicking his legs. Forced to the ground by their blows, the warden was then sat on by the accomplice.

Mr Onywera said: “He tried to trip me three times and then he was kicking and throwing punches. On the other side of the road they both attacked me. I had injuries to my nose and jaw. “

Dergoul, of Holland Road, East Ham, was found guilty of assault by beating.

He was detained by the US military after being picked up in Afghanistan, where he says he was trying to speculate on cheap property before he lost his arm in a bombing.

Dergoul says his captors mistreated him before he was released in March 2004.

He faces sentencing later this month.


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